Envisioning Ukrainian Literature 2019: Versions and Demarcations, Part I

Tuesday, February 19, 2019
1201 International Affairs Building (420 West 118th St, 12th floor)

Please join the Ukrainian Studies Program at the Harriman Institute, Columbia University for a round table discussion on Envisioning Ukrainian Literature 2019: Versions and Demarcations, Part I.

What are the different ways that Ukrainian literature can be defined in 2019? Literature written in the Ukrainian language? Literature written by citizens of Ukraine in any language? Literature written in Ukrainian outside of Ukraine? Literature written by Ukrainians living outside of Ukraine, in any language? Literature written about Ukraine in any language? This event gathers a panel of writers and scholars at a round table to discuss various ways of belonging to Ukrainian literature.

Speakers: Vasyl Makhno, Oleksiy Nikitin, Maria Rewakowicz

Discussant: Yuri Shevchuk

Moderator: Mark Andryczyk


Vasyl Makhno, born in Chortkiv, Ukraine, is a Ukrainian poet, prose writer, essayist, and translator. He is the author of twelve collections of poetry: Схима / Skhyma (1993), Самотність Цезаря / Caesar’s Solitude (1994),  Книга пагорбів та годин / The Book of Hills and Hours (1996), Плавник риби / The Flipper of the Fish (2002), 38 віршів про Нью-Йорк і дещо інше / 38 Poems about New York and Some Other Things (2004), Cornelia Street Café: нові та вибрані вірші / Cornelia Street Café: New and Selected Poems (2007), Зимові листи / Winter Letters (2011),  я хочу бути джазом і рок-н-ролом / I Want to be Jazz and Rock’n’Roll (2013), Ровер / Bike (2015) Єрусалимські вірші / Jerusalem Poems (2016) and most recently  Паперовий міст / Paper Bridge (2017). He has also published a book of short stories Дім в Бейтінґ Голлов / House in Bating Hollow (2015) and two books of essays Парк кульутури і відпочинку імені Ґертруди Стайн / The Gertrude Stein Memorial Cultural and Recreation Park (2006) and Котилася торба / Horn of Plenty (2011). Makhno currently lives in New York City.

Oleksiy Nikitin, born in Kyiv, Ukraine, is a writer of prose and a member of the Ukrainian center of the International PEN-club. His books have been translated and published in Ukraine, Russia, United Kingdom, Italy, Switzerland and the United States. Nikitin is the author of several novels, a number of short prose pieces, and numerous short stories including: Рука птицелова/ The Bird Catcher’s Hand (2000) (awarded the Korolenko prize of the National Writers Union of Ukraine, for the best Ukrainian prose written in Russian), the novel Три жизни Сергея Бояршинова, банкира и художника / The Three Lives of Sergey Boyarshinov, a banker and artist (2003), the collection of short prose Окно на базар / A Window to the Market (2004), the novels Istemi (2011), Mahjong (2012), and Victory Park (2014). In 2014 Victory Park was awarded the Russian Prize, which is awarded to extraordinary prose works written in Russian by authors not living in Russia. The novel’s Ukrainian translation was published by Fabula in 2016. In 2016 the Ukrainian publishing house “Lyuta Sprava”, based in Kiev published his short novel entitled Санитар с Институтской / A Paramedic from Institutska St. In the same year Druzhba Narodov due to political reasons published it under a different title Shkil-Mozdil. The setting for most of Nikitin’s writings is Kyiv, Ukraine where he lives.

Maria G. Rewakowicz was born in Lidzbark Warmiński, Poland. She holds a PhD from the University of Toronto. Rewakowicz teaches Ukrainian literature at Rutgers University--New Brunswick and is also affiliated with the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Washington. She is the author of the monographs Ukraine’s Quest for Identity: Embracing Cultural Hybridity in Literary Imagination, 1991-2011 (2018), Literature, Exile, Alterity: The New York Group of Ukrainian Poets (2014) and co-editor of Contemporary Ukraine on the Cultural Map of Europe (2009). She also authored a book of essays Persona non grata (2012) and compiled two anthologies of the New York Group poetry, all three published in Ukraine.  She is the author of four books of poetry: З мішка мандрівника / From a Wanderer's Sack (1987), Шепотіння, шепотіння / Whispering, Whispering (1989), М’яке Е  / Soft E (1992), and Зелений дах / The Green Roof (1999). Rewakowicz lives in New York City.

Yuri Shevchuk, born in Volodymyrets, Ukraine, is lecturer of Ukrainian language at Columbia University’s Department of Slavic Languages. He holds a Ph.D. in Germanic Philology from Kyiv State University (1987), and MA in Political Science from the New School for Social Research (1996). He has published in the US, Canadian, and Ukrainian press and on the Internet on issues of Ukrainian language, identity, culture, Ukrainian and world cinema.  His latest publication is Beginner's Ukrainian with Interactive Online Workbook a textbook for university students and independent learners worldwide, (Hippocrene Books, August 2013, second edition) and Мовна шизофренія: quo vadis, Україно? / Linguistic Schizophrenia. Whither, Ukraine? (2015). He has lectured on Ukrainian language, culture, and film at leading US, Canadian, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Ukrainian universities. He is currently working on Ukrainian-English Collocations Dictionary and on the project entitled «Ukrainian language and identity since 1991».

Mark Andryczyk, born in Philadelphia, USA, has a PhD in Ukrainian Literature from the University of Toronto (2005). His monograph The Intellectual as Hero in 1990s Ukrainian Fiction was published by the University of Toronto Press in 2012. A Ukrainian edition of that monograph, Intelektual iak heroi ukrains’koi prozy 90-kh rokiv XX stolittia was published by Piramida in 2014.  Since 2008, he has administrator the Ukrainian Studies Program at the Harriman Institute, Columbia University and has taught Ukrainian literature at its Department of Slavic Languages. He is a translator of Ukrainian literature into English. In 2008-2017 he organized the Contemporary Ukrainian Literature Series (cosponsored by the Harriman and Kennan Institutes), which brought leading Ukrainian literary figures to audiences in North America. Andryczyk is editor and compiler of The White Chalk of Days, the Contemporary Ukrainian Literature Series Anthology (Academic Studies Press, 2017). He has translated eleven essays by Yuri Andrukhovych for the publication My Final Territory: Selected Essays (University of Toronto Press, 2018).